The Clan System

For 500 years until the middle of the 18th century, Lochaber was run under the feudal clan system.

The clan chiefs were aided by ‘tacksmen’ who were given large parcels of land to distribute among the lower order clansmen. This system was designed to ensure loyalty in times of war and was centred on the stronghold castles of the clans, such as Invergarry, Achnacarry, Tioram and Glensanda.

But in 1745 Charles Edward Stuart (Bonnie Prince Charlie) raised the Jacobite standard at Glenfinnan in proclamation of his right to the throne, and set in motion events that would bring about the end of the clan system. Despite victories in battles in Scotland and England, Bonnie Prince Charlie was defeated at Culloden the following year and the government in London introduced various acts to subdue the rebellious Highlanders.